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Aankhon Mein Teri
A Maaneet Fan Fic
Maan didn't know why he didn't delete the unwanted voice message on his mobile. He really should delete it. There was no reason to keep it and there was actually a very good reason to consign it to electronic oblivion. Every moment he spent thinking about what to do with it, was a moment that should be spent figuring out how to proceed with this project under the current circumstances. Not only did he have to oversee a plan to get back on track after what turned out to be a bomb blast at the site, but he also had to be constantly available to the investigating authorities. He shouldn't allow anything to interfere with his business efforts, and certainly not the phone call of a person who was no concern of his. Taking his phone out, he went through the options until he came to the delete function. His fingers hovered over the buttons as his conscious mind urged him to delete the troublesome message. At the very last second, for some unknown reason, Maan chose play instead of delete.
"Ji...Main Geet bol rahi hoon," came the soft, slightly nervous voice. (Hello...This is Geet speaking.)
After that first sentence, there was a slight pause, as if she wasn't sure how to continue. Then the flood was let loose. "I'm calling for a few reasons. One is so that you have my number of the phone that Dadima got me, incase you ever want to call me. Also, I wanted to say I'm sorry for the hard time you're having. I hope you're okay and able to get your work done alright. Like I said, I have a mobile now, so if you ever want to talk, you can call me up. Um...oh, I don't know if maybe Dadima told you or not, but I'm starting college in a few weeks. I thought you might like to be informed. So, like I said, if you want to talk about anything, like what's going on with work or anything, you've got my number, so just give me a call whenever. I think Dadima would really like it if you called her too. I think she is pretty worried about how you are doing. I know you told her that everything is being taken care of, but I think that it would make her feel a lot better if she got to talk to you more often. I know Nani is also worried about you. Hopefully you can find some time to call soon. I guess that's all. Okay, bye."
Maan had never heard anyone speak so fast, or say so much in such a short time, his entire life. If the whole speech wasn't so annoying, he might how found it kind of amusing. As it was, he was quite agitated that the girl seemed intent on bothering him, even though he had made his intentions perfectly clear. And she expected that he would call her, or be interested in what she was doing? Well, he really didn't have any time to spend on her trivial talks, what with the difficulties he was facing at the moment. Steeling himself, he made the decision and this time followed through. Within seconds the message was deleted and Maan was finally able to concentrate on what was important.
At the very moment Maan was deleting her message, Geet was in the bathroom, washing her hands again. She was desperately trying to get rid of the remnants of her mehendi, which for some reason had stained very dark and lasted much longer than she was used to. It was all a part of her preparation for going back to college. Given the usual circumstances of her marriage, Geet preferred no one at school to know of her marital status. That is why, even though Dadima and Panjab University's Vice-Chancellor, a friend of Dadima, thought her scores showed she should transfer to the university, but she wanted to tranfer to Government College for Girls in Chandigarh. Since Dadima had agreed to her not wearing sindoor or mangalsutra, Geet said she would feel more comfortable if she was in an all girls school. That way she would not have to worry about any boys who might be interested, thinking she was single. Dadima had agreed, and when they went to register, they had informed the principal of Geet's circumstance.
Since Geet would be starting school with a bunch of new girls, who would naturally be curious, Geet wanted to avoid as many questions as possible. That was why she was washing her hands for the hundredth time, desperately trying to get rid of the last of the design. Yes, if anyone asked, she could always make up some excuse, but Geet preferred not to tell lies. She was already feeling bad enough for putting up a pretense about herself and her husband in front of Dadima and Nani. She didn't need to make her life any more complicated at school than it already would be.
Leaving the bathroom, she came back to the wardrobe and continued her earlier activity of going through her clothes. She was trying to decide which of the gifts of clothing she had received would be appropriate to wear to school. Among some of the gifts were sarees. Those were a definite no. Many of the suits had intricate embroidery and bead work. Those she also set aside. She was left with about six or seven outfits that she thought were simple enough not to cause talk. That, along with her old clothes would suffice. While rearranging her clothing, Geet glanced over to the bedside table and saw her mobile laying there. She walked over and quickly checked to see if there were any messages. There were none. Frustrated, she slammed the phone back down and put her hands angrily on her hips.
"Maan Singh Khurana, aap kya soch rahe hain? Aap apni parivar ki zimmedaariyon ko bhool gaye?" (Maan Singh Khurana, what are you thinking? Have you forgotten your family responsibilities?)
Geet knew what Maan had written in his letter, and she knew that it meant that he didn't care much what happened to her. But she couldn't understand how he could stay away so long from Dadima and Nani. Their marriage was over a month gone, and since that brief time when he came for the registration, he had not been back to visit for so much as even a minute. By now she had heard enough about his habits to know that when he was away, he usually came back at least once a week to see how the older ladies were doing. However, since facing this recent problem, it was almost like he dropped off the face of the earth.
Poor Dadima had to leave message after message on his phone before he ever called her back. One brief little five minute conversation was all that he could spare, aparently. This behavior was very confusing to Geet. After all, he admitted that the only reason he married her was for Dadima's sake. So then, why was he not giving his grandmothers more attention? This was why she had taken the drastic step of looking up his number in Dadima's phone without her knowing. Geet was determined that one way or another she would speak to Maan. She called him repeatedly, at all different times of the day, with no success. Finally, she decided to leave a message, hoping that good manners would force him to return her call. It had been days, and as yet, Mr. Maan Singh Khurana had not bothered to respond.
Sitting down on the bed, still looking at her silent phone, Geet tried to reason out the possible explanations for her husband's silence. One option was that he was just extremely ill-mannered. Geet didn't find that hard to believe just considering her own encounters with him. Another possibility was that the situation was more difficult than he had let Dadima know. If that was the case, then most likely he was extremely busy. However, Geet didn't really think either of those were strong enough reasons to fully explain his behavior. She was beginning to worry that he was purposely ignoring the family, now that she was a part of it. She was afraid that in his efforts to avoid her, he was neglecting Dadima and Nani.
If that was the case, then truly, her pati was the strangest man alive. Did he really believe that he could just leave after writing one little note, and ignore his wife for the rest of his life? If he was really busy and couldn't come home, then fine, one little phone call every now and then would suffice. But this, this total disregard was ridiculous. They couldn't possibily continue living like this forever. Eventually, something would have to change, though Geet was not sure how that would happen. After a few moments of silently cursing the dusht danaav, a horrible thought came into her mind.
What if he really didn't intend for their relationship to continue? What if he actually was thinking of divorce? Just the thought of the word was enough to make Geet shudder. She had never met anyone who was divorced, but she had heard enough talk in Hoshiarpur to know that divorce was extremely looked down on. If she ended up facing a divorce, she had no idea how she would deal with it. How would her divorce affect her family, her mother?
"Nahin, Geet. Aisa mat soch. Aisa nahin ho sakta. Voh aisa nahin karenge. Hai na, Babaji?" (No, Geet. Don't think that. That can't happen. He wouldn't do that. Right, Babaji?)
Geet's very worrying thought was interrupted by Nakul, who had come to call her down to dinner. As she sat with Dadima and Nani, telling them about her day, her thoughts began to calm down. She realized that if Maan was willing to marry her, just so that Dadima's health wasn't affected, why would he then turn around and divorce her. That would likely have a worse affect on Dadima's health. Her earlier thoughts were correct. They couldn't live their lives this way for ever. She would just have to be patient. Eventually the dynamic of their relationship would have to change. Geet just hoped that the change would be something that she could accept. Right now she felt very odd, being the wife of someone who was a stranger, and yet not quite a stranger. In fact, maybe it was Maan who should be pitied. After all, she knew much more about him than he knew about her.
Regardless of all the confusion surrounding her marriage, Geet made a promise to herself when she went to bed that night. In just a few weeks, she would going back to school. Now that she didn't have Daarji and Brij veerji looking over her shoulder, she intended to fully enjoy the experience. She knew that it would be a difficult year. Both Dadima and the principal thought that she would be able to complete all the necessary classes to finish her B.A. in Pyschology in just a year. That meant that her class load would be heavy, but she liked a challenge. Smiling to herself, she acknowledged that she was doing just as her Papaji wanted. No rude behavior by a dusht danaav could take that happy feeling away from her.
Sorry that it's such a short update. I didn't exactly have writers block, but it was difficult trying to figure out how to sort out what to write next. This chapter has really ended up being kind of a setup for the next phase of the story where Geet goes back to college. Also, please be patient for Maaneet together scenes. As you may have figured out, Maan is going to be a tough nut to crack. I will make sure to send out pms tonight after I get back from work.
I don't really know much about colleges in India, so if I ever goof up, please make allowances. This is the only link I could find for the college that Geet chose.
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